Life is a conglomeration of unexpected meetings and happenings. With the addition of the internet, these connections and events have only increased in frequency. For this reason, I am often a proponent for the increased avenues of dialogue and relationships found through the world-wide web. Moreover, I have had the privilege of meeting and getting to know individuals I would have never met any other way.
I had one such encounter a few weeks ago with an individual who had just published his first collection of poems. We struck up a conversation about the book, and he ended up offering me a free copy to read. He had not had much success yet with selling the book and simply wanted to circulate a few copies around to people interested.
Here’s where I could turn this conversation for my own personal purpose: to stand on a bit of a soap-box about the positive things I’ve found through the age of the internet in contrast to the often attributed negative. But this isn’t about me.
This is about a humble poet who sent me a free collection of poems: Seriously Silly by Marty Rogers.
The package arrived in the mail early last week, but being busy, I did not have the chance to read it just then. Later, I found, upon opening, that he had included a piece of paper with a hand-written note, along with a hand-written poem just inside the front cover. The note began: “This book, like its author, its readers, is imperfect.” He went on to explain that a few mistakes had not been caught in the proofreading process and that he choose purposefully to not re-print as a reminder for himself going forward.
I found that rationale inspiring and genuine. It’s the kind of quote that you tuck away in your pocket and remember later in life.
The poems are simple in format, style, and language, but what impressed me was the accessibility of his poems. This small collection of poems was intended to reach two audiences: kids and adults alike (10 and up according to the author). I found myself, a mid 20’s something, enjoying several of them and even putting the book down to think deeply about a few. Not every poem resonated with me, but rare is the collection of poems where that would ever be true.
While anyone could read these and find some value, I see this collection of poems best suited for a family setting. I have no preconceptions of my future, but I could see myself reading these poems to a kid, nephew, niece, etc. and equally enjoying them together. Clearly, I have a heavy potential for bias, but I do believe I’ve always held my own as a critic.
If you’re interested, his book is on Amazon here: Seriously Silly by Marty Rogers
In closing, I wanted to share with you, with his permission, one of my favorites.
What Compromise is All About by Marty Rogers
Perhaps those nearest the mountain top,
Those closest to the sun’s warm glow,
Could take some time, just to stop,
And help those of us toiling below.
Though few would ever reach the summit,
And that triumph may never be known,
None would ever have to plummet,
And none would have to clime alone.